Tuesday, October 5, 2010

maternity fashion tips

This was hard to do.  I feel like a goober in most of these pictures but I said I'd do it and a promise is a promise.  Before I begin this post took forever.  For-ev-er.  So I hope you appreciate it since it was weeks in the making.  I'm almost still wondering why I even decided to do this... I'm not a fashion guru and no expert on maternity wear. (theres my disclaimer, moving on.)

I wanted to share some stuff I've discovered for myself as I've struggled (yes struggled) to dress a prego body.  No one can really afford to buy a whole new wardrobe for just a few month span.  What's great is, I can get by with the same clothes almost my whole pregnancy because shirts these days are just made longer, stretchier, and flowy.  But it's that darn third trimester when I pop like crazy and don't really want my non-pregnant clothes to get stretched out.  So if you are going to buy new clothes for your pregnancy, here are my tips. (which generally apply in your third trimester when your belly is obvious to everyone)  Some of these are no brainers probably but whatev here we go..

Wear Loose tops in your last trimester:  Loose fitting doesn't mean baggy
If you're like me, you'll feel more comfortable in your husbands shirts and basketball shorts.  But I don't go for that look when I'm out.    I don't know about you, but I just want to look nice when pregnant (since you know everyone is looking at you, right) AND I don't want to wear clothes that provoke more eating.  So wear clothes that are loose enough- not super tight- but that give you a silhouette as well.  You need to have some accountability in the sense that you'll still SEE what's going on under there and you won't over eat thinking you can, because your belly is "supposed" to grow.  Make sense?
Let me say it another way... I worked at a doctors office prego with Brody so I was worried my 5 day a week, 9 hour days in scrubs would make me TOO comfortable and I'd eat more and not really notice the excess weight gain.  I worked hard to eat right and it paid off my first time around.  I've actually been lazier this time but that's another story...

Don't be afraid of the Maternity Section:
maternity tops
I used to avoid it because it felt like a waste of money and they were "fat clothes".  But a good maternity top can be the most comfortable thing you'll wear- so give a few a try.
Plus, you KNOW the baby will only be about 7ish, 8 pounds but you're gaining 25 or more total.  So rather than stress about the weight you are gaining (and try to pretend you're not gaining by squeezing uncomfortably into your old clothes) just focus on being comfortable and enjoying your time pregnant.  It won't be long till strangers stop opening doors for you and giving you the only fan in your art class.  Soak it up.

Layering can help not only hide stuff you want to hide but they add added interest to your outfit.  I do it.

Buying Oversize sometimes works
I would have never recommended this before I got pregnant- I was all about shredding your fat pants so you don't revert back to them and fill them in again.  However, you can find shirts to buy oversized and they can still look cute- just serve a different purpose than the designer intended.  My examples above- I went up several sizes in my beach cover-up shirt so I wasn't stuffed in something and wasn't too hot (luckily for me it was $1 at Goodwill)
#2- a regular tank top from Target bought large enough to be a shirt dress (on sale $10)- then paired with jean leggings.
#3- same as above except it was from Anthropologie and I paid $9.  Saweet.

Bellyband, leggings, jeggings, maternity pants... it's all good.
Dressing the bottom half can be harder than the top, I think.  And I carry lllllooooow.  Any lower and he'd be waving at me.  So basically my only option once I hit a certain mark is completely unzipped shorts or pants with a belly band.  Once those become too uncomfortable for you, maternity jeans can save your life.  If you don't want to buy a ton and only own two pairs (like me) than leggings and jeggings are your ticket to comfortville.   AND you can wear them when you're not prego- excellent!  I wear these jean leggings every week (ones in the middle shirt dress pic..not sure if they quite qualify as "jeggings") as well as my leggings which are great.

Go for Versatility: if you're spending money, make it worth your while.
versatile 2
(Sorry you can't see my whole church outfit- but you can imagine)
You want shirts especially, to be versatile.
I go for things I can dress up or dress down... like this shirt I got at Kohl's in the Lauren Conrad collection recently.  Not only can I dress it up and down for a prego belly but it will also work for my NON-prego figure. (Since I know the size is what I wear postpartum and it's not actually a maternity shirt, either)

I am not generally a flat-wearing person since I usually feel short and squatty in them.  At church I prefer tall heels, they make me feel more feminine although comfort is compromised (most of my heels kill me, but I smile through them because well.. I like the way they look).  Now that I'm prego though flats are great to still help you look dressed up but instead now you are actually comfortable.  Plus, in some cases super tall heels on a pregnant lady look just wrong.  So wear flats and save yourself

Don't smush the bump!!  
high waist
This is my number ONE biggest concern for prego ladies everywhere.  I don't see it that often but when I do, I just want to help that poor squished baby in there....
I'm talking about when ladies buy maternity jeans that are supposed to go all the way OVER the bump but only make it half way.  So they leave the tight elastic in the middle of their belly.  Talk about OUCH!.. and for both parties involved.  It ends up looking like that person is trying to (unsuccessfully) hide rolls.  The BEST thing a prego girl can do is accentuate the belly!  Make it look round like it's supposed to and don't try to hide it.  As soon as it starts showing (and really showing- unlike my 14 week pic when I thought I had something to show off) my advice is to wear your tighter clothes since it will be more obvious to people that you are pregnant.  Before that point though, I'd wear looser shirts so people don't think you've just gained weight.  And then once your belly becomes REALLY pronounced go back to looser clothes- just so you can feel comfy and also mask any weight you've put on that you don't want to show off.
So with THAT said, wear clothes that are tapered at the top of your waist.  It's really all you can do.  So to spruce it up, belts are fun.

And lastly- this one's just for fun but I think important:
Jewelry it up
Think about it- that first year your baby is going to be clawing at you like none other.  I remember several times Brody tearing earrings out or breaking necklaces.  So wear jewelry while you can when no one is tugging on it.  I'll be wearing jewelry after of course but probably not as much since it can be more of a bother than fun(;

So do you agree?  Disagree?  Anything that you do?  Please share (:

unrelated last thoughts for the day:
 this article made me happy.  Nice to see some teens respect their bodies, eh?
And THIS lovely lady had me help her with a fun project.  Go check it out!

17 lovely comments:

Autumn Lynn said... Reply To This Comment

Someday when I am pregnant....I totally hope I remember these things. You look so cute!

{megs in wonderland} said... Reply To This Comment

You are SO HELPFUL! Thank you, THANK YOUUUU for this post Connie. I have been trippin' over pregnancy style the past few weeks. Since I'm only 11 weeks right now, my lil baby bump is just barely starting to show and in reality, I just look like I'm putting on some tummy weight. I think it's going to be like that for a few more weeks too, until I get nice and big:) I appreciate the tips. I'll probably start texting you daily with outfit advice.
Oh and while I'm thinking about it, where do you find the best leggings? I am always on the lookout for THICK ones. Let me know!

carlotta said... Reply To This Comment

Um, you looks like a goober? Please! You look gorgeous! Seriously :)
I still have awhile until I have kids, but I loved these tips! I want to bookmark this post and look at it again in ten years ;)

Tunes & Spoons said... Reply To This Comment

Beautiful!! When I have babies, I hope I can be as cute as you! You are one beautiful pregnant woman!

Melissa said... Reply To This Comment

omg thanks for this post!
i'm definitely gonna come back to it when my time comes ;)


Johnny and Anny said... Reply To This Comment

What are you talking about, you ARE an expert in fashion!! You are one of the most lovely prego ladies, good luck with everything!

Dressing in your third semester is no picnic, and I almost find the two or three months postpartum equally as challenging. I'll have to see what ideas you suggest:)

Jennifer said... Reply To This Comment

I'm pretty sure I will never look as good as you do when it's finally my turn to be preggo but thank you so much for doing this fun post. I'm not even pregnant and I enjoyed it and appreciated it!
You look wonderful!

Britney Jean said... Reply To This Comment

this is the most amazing post ever.

i'm SOOO jealous of your wardrobe. you are seriously the best dressed prego girl. and you have the cutest prego body. thanks for the tips! too bad i just HAD my baby and now i can't use them for a long time...

Jennifer said... Reply To This Comment

I totally agree with you! The best maternity clothes are the ones that you can wear after you have the baby, especially right after, when you can't quite wear regular clothes yet.

And its definitely better to buy maternity pants than try to squeeze into regular ones and be uncomfortable. My favorite ones were the secrit fit belly from Motherhood. And leggings are always comfy.

Erica Ann said... Reply To This Comment

Although I won't be able to bust out the maternity wear as soon as I thought, this was helpful. Question though: where do you buy your maternity jeans? With Ruby I could never find any that looked like decent jeans, they were all too baggy all through the legs and made me look like I was a 40 year old prego woman! yikes

Venassa said... Reply To This Comment

Sounds like good advice. I'll try to keep it in mind for the future.
You always look great, btw.

Bree and Bryce said... Reply To This Comment

Connie you look so stinking cute! Not to mention super stylin! Great tips...I'll need to remember them for when I get preggo again!

Mauri said... Reply To This Comment

you are the cutest preggo girl ever! Great style. I'm a firm believer in not letting style go out the window due to pregnancy. No baby for me yet but one day hopefully I'll be more about embracing teh bump then hiding it :)

Lauren said... Reply To This Comment

Favorite line.. "Any lower and he'd be waving at me"! Sooooo I almost peed when I read that.

I'm seriously loving the new baggy-ish shirt style that is going on right now.

Lovin your high waist outfits.. mama needs a belt and some leggins!

Thanks girl!

Adam and Wendy said... Reply To This Comment

All your outfits are so cute! :) When I'm preggars I'll come back here and refer...and I completely agree about the pants that go half-way up the bump...I always feel bad for those babies inside!!

PS I gave you an award on my blog today! :)

Karm said... Reply To This Comment

wow... you have great fashion sense... haha when I was pregnant I loaded up on huge shirts and maternity clothes... I just wore whatever fit me haha now I wish I paid more attention on my outfits ):

Emma said... Reply To This Comment


enough said.